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What determines the quality of chocolate ?

Delicious chocolate begins with the careful selection of ingredients. The cocoa provides most of the chocolate’s flavour. Its amazing taste depends on the variety of cocoa tree that it comes from (Forastero, Trinitario or Criollo), the conditions in which the tree and the beans have been grown, and the way the beans have been fermented and dried. Fermentation is generally considered to account for one-third of the chocolate’s flavour.

Sugar can come from beet or cane. Its degree of purity, fineness and colour will have an impact on the taste of the final chocolate.

Milk powders also have a significant impact on the taste of milk chocolate. The time of the year (spring milk, summer milk), the cow’s feed and the type of process used to turn liquid milk into powder can all drastically change the taste of the milk powder and hence of the resulting chocolate.

All other ingredients play an important role in creating delicious chocolate, which is why we carefully select them for their outstanding quality.

The chocolate-making process also plays a very important role in the deliciousness of chocolate. The fineness of a chocolate can be varied by adapting the chocolate-making process. This grain size distribution, called granulometry, has a clear impact on the way the chocolate melts in your mouth and the way it releases all its flavour when eaten.

Moreover, the conching process (see ‘What is conching?’) develops the chocolate’s essential flavours. Through the mechanical shear in the conche and the heat that is generated, some unwanted flavours evaporate together with the small amount of water present, and some very desirable flavours are formed.

Finally, good tempering ensures the chocolate is snappy and shiny.

In conclusion, combining expertise in raw material selection and the chocolate-making process, we can produce a chocolate that upholds the Belgian tradition of chocolate excellence.